Prior to having some meaningful feedback from potential customers (or in the case of medical technologies -- some efficacy data), it's next to impossible to recruit outside entrepreneurs or to solicit investment. SBIR/STTR [Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs, also known as America's Seed Fund] funding can be a bridge over this gap, but it's a slow process and requires someone (often a PhD student or post-doc) to commit to being in a startup that has scant funding, instead of pursuing a more stable job in a larger company or an academic career. SBIR/STTR funding only pays for research, so it may not be possible to involve an experienced business partner/entrepreneur with the scientific founders in the early stages of the company, which can stunt their business development efforts.
If you have experience with marketing, SEO, or a knack for getting people excited about the products and services you use on a regular basis, think about refining your skills and putting them to work making money online as a small business marketing consultant in your region—especially if you can become a local SEO expert and can help local clients rank higher in their search results.

The First Rule in Marketing Anything is that nobody cares what you think. Most people don't take the time to learn how to sell things by identifying what people ACTUALLY want. Use this key fact about people to your advantage, make all the marketing about them. I've been running my business this way for years now, creating and selling products around those wants and desires. I've made a lot of money with this secret, and someone I look to who's also made a lot doing this is my friend Adrian Morrison. Over the last year built a brand new business around the idea of rapidly testing things to sell online. You need to learn Adrian's strategy. It's honestly never been easier to build out your own product testing system like his, and what's great is he's actually put together a book on exactly how he does it.


There’s plenty of work and clients to be found. If you know where to look. To start, you need to know if there is enough demand for your skill to make it worth the effort to go out looking for work. Start by searching for freelance postings on sites like Flexjobs, SolidGigs, Contena, greatcontent or one of the dozens of other skill-specific freelance job boards.
What is entrepreneurship really about? And why’s it so important? An entrepreneur is the person who sees a problem in the world and immediately focuses on creating the solution. They’re the leaders that strike out on their own to improve society. Whether they’re creating jobs or a new product, they constantly take action to ensure world progress. In the process of understanding what is entrepreneurship, let’s look at why entrepreneurs are important in society. 
Whether it’s by editing metadata tags, regularly updating the company blog, or searching for smart keywords to rank highly on, a good SEO consultant can drastically change how a company’s website appears to search engine users—and just a few positions on Google can make a huge difference in traffic numbers. In short, you could have a big impact on a business’s bottom line, which means this online business idea is in high demand.
As the internet grows and expands, not only is SEO going to get more competitive, but it's also going to grow more lucrative. You could quite easily capitalize on this industry if you know what you're doing. This doesn't just go for doing work for clients, but also for yourself. You could launch any number of online businesses, niche websites, and blogs with the right amount of SEO skills. 
We believe that business owners have been under the incorrect influence or impression, for way too long. That they need to keep paying for the “only alternative” in running tiny ads, in exchange for a comparatively small amount of new customer acquisitions’. Our primary objective is to show business owners and business management professionals that they can actually own “better alternatives” to internet marketing, by simply empowering themselves with a few simple tools, methods and proven successful internet marketing strategies.
In 2017, there were almost 90 million pet dogs in the US. Which has opened up a huge opportunity to make money online as a dog watcher or sitter. Specialized sites like Rover or Care.com connect pet owners with pet walkers, sitters, and boarding houses to help look after their best friends when they’re at work or on a trip. If you’re an animal lover, you can make extra money and get to spend some quality time with a furry friend.
The Kissmetrics blog offers analytics and testing insights on everything you'd ever need when it comes to marketing. Data-driven marketing is truly their expertise. The team at Kissmetrics regularly examines statistical trends to create reports that can better inform brand's online performance. These posts help create solutions for companies looking to improve their online marketing, and a lot of their findings can help to shape the decisions made for a lot of companies as they try to achieve their marketing goals. Arguably the best part about their insights, and their real differentiator in comparison to blogs that are seemingly similar, is that nearly all of their thoughts are backed by corresponding metrics that support and provide reasoning for the advice they're giving.
The same can be done with professional goals. Don't make your goal to start a company or get promoted to an executive-level position right off the bat. Instead, identify skills and areas of improvement. Start with one of those by taking a course, working with a business advisor or doing research. These relevant steps will help you on your way to that larger, more complex goal.

When I began to think about my next business venture, I realized my passions had shifted, and that I was fueled not only by affecting positive change, but also by my family. Family inspires me to work harder, be better, and push through any roadblocks that may come my way. It has become the foundation of my current company, Picniic. Find the thing that motivates you to get up and work every day, and make it the core of your business.


5. Fiverr – Fiverr is a great place to make a few bucks or spend a few bucks if you need some of the services people offer. Basically, everything is $5. You either pay $5 or charge $5. They call them “gigs.” You can offer your services however you choose. If you sell art and you’re fine selling pieces for $5 each, that’s a gig. If you’re a graphic designer and you want to offer your services for $10/hour, simply offer a 30 minute gig. If they need two hours of graphic design, they pay you $20, or $10/hour by buying four gigs.
Creating a video series and selling it as a digital download on your blog, much like an eBook, can be another great seller. A video course, teaching viewers a specific skill or how to achieve a particular activity, may well resonate with your audience. If you are going to go down this route then your videos need to be as professional as possible so you should consider investing in some video and lighting equipment, as well as editing software.
Test websites. Remote usability testing means getting paid to navigate a website for the first time and giving feedback to the website owner. Most tests take approximately 15 minutes, and you can get paid up to $10 for each test. A test involves performing a scenario on the client’s website and recording yourself doing it. For example, you might be asked to go through the process of selecting and purchasing an item on a retailer’s website.[1]
What is entrepreneurship really about? And why’s it so important? An entrepreneur is the person who sees a problem in the world and immediately focuses on creating the solution. They’re the leaders that strike out on their own to improve society. Whether they’re creating jobs or a new product, they constantly take action to ensure world progress. In the process of understanding what is entrepreneurship, let’s look at why entrepreneurs are important in society. 
Early on, determine what values you want your employees to have, and how you want them to fit into your larger vision of company culture. It’s crucial to surround yourself with positive people who have the same drive and passion for your business as you do. I have found that meeting with as many people as possible is essential to understanding the range of candidates and finding the best people for each role. Don’t hire someone simply because they are a friend or look good on paper, and don’t be afraid to take your time in finding the right person, either.
Despite Instagram's growing popularity, not all brands know what they're doing on the app. If you have a background in social media and marketing and a passion for photography and Instagram, starting a consulting business that focuses on the popular photo app can be a great way to make money while helping other businesses improve their content and thrive.
Logan is a CPA with a Masters Degree in Taxation from the University of Southern California. He has been featured in publications such as CNBC, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, and HuffPost on topics ranging from paying down debt to using credit card points to saving money on taxes. After spending nearly 10 years in public accounting, including 5 with professional services firm Ernst & Young where he consulted with multinational companies and high net worth individuals on their tax situations, he launched Money Done Right in 2017 to communicate modern ideas on earning, saving, and investing money.
Based on my own experience, it pays to be a thought leader in your own industry. In today’s world, it is easy to publish your own information (including videos), but the traditional media outlets still carry a lot of weight. Get positive exposure and help others by sharing your expertise. By building up a following and strategic partners, good things will happen. On a side note, it pays to love what you do. Hard work and dedication can separate success stories from those that do not have their heart in it. As the old Confucius quote goes, “Find something you love to do and you will never have to work for the rest of your life.”
Once you have a thorough profile of your customer, determining how and where to reach them is much easier. This step may take awhile, and that’s OK. If you start marketing before you have a clear customer profile though, you will likely be wasting your dollars in places that will never reach your customer. Just because Pinterest is growing rapidly, doesn’t mean your audience is the one making it grow. 

All of my accomplishments to date related to professional and personal development have come from setting specific short- and long-term goals. Without formalizing them, it's easy to let the daily routine and unexpected take over. Then, before you know it, years have passed without achieving the goals you had in mind. Here are four tips that I've used that might be helpful to other entrepreneurs who want to see their goals through.
It’s one of the oldest and most proven ways to make money – buy low, sell high. The buy low part comes from searching garage sales, estate sales, and even thrift stores to find items that are in good condition (“gently used”) but selling well below what they would if they were brand-new. In this way, you might be able to acquire an item for $5, and later sell it for $50.
Take good pictures. Some of the options below don’t require you to actually take the picture and sell the product, but for the ones that do, make sure you take a clear picture that makes your product stand out from the others.  If you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures, set up a small “studio-like” area in your home with a backdrop and proper lighting to really make your pictures come across as professional. And of course, you’ll want a good camera too.
Instead, you’ll be following a proven strategy for maximizing views of multiple videos on a regular basis. You’ll be creating useful content…something engaging that people want to watch. And it works in many, many different niches. It could be a how-to video, a talking-head video on a topic of interest to people interested in your niche...the sky is the limit.
What good is a successful startup if you destroy yourself in the process? Nothing is as precious as health, which is why you shouldn’t sacrifice your well-being for the sake of your entrepreneurship. In fact, what might seem like hard work could ultimately derail your career. Losing sleep, eating unhealthily and allowing yourself to become stressed are surefire ways to shorten your life expectancy. By tending to your health, you’ll have the strength to carry out your goals.
Millions of people have listened to Steve Jobs’ 2005 commencement speech at Stanford, and for good reason. He nailed the passion issue: “You’ve got to find what you love… Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”
Launch before you feel ready. If you wait until your product or service feels perfect, someone else will already be doing a better job of helping your customers solve their problems. Validate your business idea by launching fast, bringing on a small group of paying customers and adapting to make your solution great for them over time. You’ll learn how to validate ideas quickly & cheaply in my course, 30 Days to Validate.
One of the online world’s hottest professions at the moment, this business is a gold mine for the tech-savvy entrepreneurs. While everyone’s slightly obsessed with getting their sites SEO optimized, not many people can actually wrap their heads around this topic. If you decide to go into this field, you can think about offering link building, content creation, on-page SEO optimization, and similar one-off packages.
You’ve probably heard that, when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), content is still king. And one of the best ways to keep your site relevant for search engines is to consistently and frequently publish high-quality web content. In other words, keyword stuffing is out, and creating compelling content that people are eager to promote is in.
The number of websites and blogs operating online demand a constant stream of high-quality, beautiful photographs that can help businesses attract and convert more customers. If you are a photographer who likes to try new things, supplying professional photos to businesses in this capacity can be a the most popular business idea for you. You can scale easily by setting up a stock photo library. This is a great business idea as it targets virtually every industry regardless of a company’s size. Check out sites like SmugMug, Photoshelter and iStockPhoto for more information.
Once you have that problem or need nailed, the next step is to validate that idea and make sure you’ve actually got customers who will pay for it. This means building a minimum viable product, getting objective feedback from real customers, incorporating updates, testing the market for demand, and getting pricing feedback to ensure there’s enough of a margin between your costs and what consumers are willing to pay.
Make sure you look up the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 and familiarize yourself with it. If you follow all of the guidelines established in the act, you’re likely to keep your customers happy. The act includes things like honoring unsubscribe requests within ten day. If you follow the guidelines your readers will appreciate it and give you repeat business.

For example, Amazon affiliates can potentially rake in obscene amounts of commission dollars if they work at it. Simply sign up as an affiliate to sell a company’s products using your special referral link, and you can get a commission for each product sold without lifting a finger. Commission ranges from product to product and also goes up in stages according to how many products sales your clicks generate. The top commission tier is 8%. That adds up to some serious amounts of cash each month if you’re promoting products with that high rate of commission ( Home & Garden is one such product area with high commissions).


Are you an expert in your field, or do you know more than the average person about a specific subject or skill? If you have adequate skills or knowledge pertaining to a particular topic, then you’re one or two steps ahead in answering your‘why to start’ an online business question. You can use your knowledge and skills to build people up while making some cash along the way!
I tend to be a competitive person, so it's helped me to turn my goal-setting into a competition with myself. While many people may not think they are competitive, you might be surprised once you create a competition that gives you something to beat. A good example is the 100-day challenge, often connected to fitness such as 100 days of planking or push-ups.
21. Facebook – Facebook swap shops are great for selling things locally. It’s like CraigsList, but a little easier. You simply search for swap shops in your area and ask to join the group. Once you’re in, take a picture of the item, write a quick description with the price and post it. It doesn’t get much easier than that. You can generally expect to get about what you would get at a yard sale, maybe a little more.
There you have it – a  comprehensive guide to the best online businesses to start this year. We deliberately didn't cover ideas like app development or IT support because they require specialized skills. That's why we only provided you with businesses you can start with very little money. In fact, you can even start some of them with very little knowledge.
This blog reflects Patel’s wide breadth of experience, making it a hub you can find helpful whether you specialize in creating content or analyzing marketing data. Content created for his different businesses, such as the above software companies and his podcast and YouTube channel, are all centralized and brought together on his own site. So in addition to covering a variety of topics, he has a range of content formats available for whatever your preference may be.
"Finally, another crucial mistake I learned from a previous blog I ran is to get REALLY clear on who you're speaking to and what you're speaking about before you get started. If you try speaking to everyone, you'll end up speaking to no one. And don't be afraid of being too niche. If you're 1 in a million, there's still 7000 other people just like you in the world."
They’re ambitious: Those who love reaching difficult goals and milestones are made to be entrepreneurs. There’s no limit to how much an entrepreneur can make and so they can always work to achieve higher levels of greatness. Since there’s no limit to what they can achieve, entrepreneurs constantly find themselves growing and achieving more than they ever imagined. When obstacles get presented in front of them, they find the workaround to their goal. Entrepreneurs are unstoppable.
One approach that has worked well for me over the years is to pinpoint the best minds in the industry and follow their every move. Listen to their podcasts, read their blogs, watch their YouTube videos, and keep up to date with their social posts. The key is to find a small group of trusted thought leaders who are renowned for breaking news, challenging the status quo, and turning up day after day with great content.
Also known as Logo Geek, Ian designs logos and brand identities for startups and SMEs. He also has over 80,000 Twitter followers and runs a popular social media group where he creates valuable resources for designers. Here's his best business advice specifically for freelancers, and for more check out his episode on my podcast about how to become a freelance designer:
Hubspot’s blog is awesome for learning about today’s best inbound marketing strategies. We love how they keep their content relevant by linking to the latest happenings in the digital world. Another great feature is how they consistently break down the steps needed to get your digital content just right (not to mention some of their articles make us LOL!).
Content Marketing Institute is your one stop shop for all things content marketing! Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, write for B2B or B2C, you’re bound to learn something new here. Some of the things we love most about CMI’s blog are their extensive case studies and statistics (the most cited in the industry!). Another cool feature is the ability to search for content by industry, so you’ll always find something that matters to you.
Learn then selling guidelines. Each marketplace has guidelines that define what you can and cannot sell. State and federal laws also impact what items are prohibited. In general, you cannot sell alcohol, weapons, service contracts, animals or event tickets. Also, while not always prohibited, you may find restrictions on how you can sell items in some categories, such as art, gift cards and coupons.[27] eBay, Craigslist and Amazon publish these guidelines on their websites.

If you're serious about making money online, start a blog. Blogging is one of the easiest and most sustainable income sources. As long as the blog is setup the right way, in the right niche, with the right content targeted at the right audience, and the offer is complementary to the content, you could make a tremendous amount of passive income from a blog.
The basic idea behind an online drop shipping business is that, as a small business owner, you don’t have to maintain a large inventory (or any inventory whatsoever) of products or handle any delivery to your customers. That eliminates the financial cost and risk of having a warehouse full of stuff you might not sell, and the hassle of arranging to send orders all over the country or the world. In fact, you don't have to manufacture or store any products at all.
Weblium is the ultimate AI website builder that frees you from the necessity to rack your brain choosing the most optimal web design for your site, as well as the functionality that it will feature. That's one of the most impressive TemplateMonster projects that allows you to launch a fully-fledged web resource in a matter of days. Just try Weblium in order to get a professional team of designers and developers create a ready-to-launch business site that will become the ideal reflection of your brand. Simply specify what kind of a website you'd like to launch, what goals you pursue, and what kind of the major components it should include. The rest of the job will be done for you.
If you love to travel and find yourself randomly searching for airfare sales or browsing Lonely Planet, why not carve out a niche for yourself as a private travel agent? My friend, Mark Jackson did just that, making extra money online with his travel consulting side business. Start with word of mouth recommendations from friends who know they can count on you for the cheapest flights, and then move on and create a Facebook or LinkedIn group to invite people who want to stay on top of the latest deals. Eventually you could spin this into a full-time consultancy teaching people how to make their dream trip a reality.
Drop shipping is another great ‘hands-off’ way to sell products. Firstly you will need to find businesses that sell products in your niche that offer a drop shipping service. Then you will need to create a website promoting and selling the products. When you make a sale, you take the payment on your site and then the manufacturer ships the goods to the buyer. The profit comes from charging a higher rate than the manufacturer, and if you are selling a high number of products this can quickly add up to a healthy revenue.
Learn then selling guidelines. Each marketplace has guidelines that define what you can and cannot sell. State and federal laws also impact what items are prohibited. In general, you cannot sell alcohol, weapons, service contracts, animals or event tickets. Also, while not always prohibited, you may find restrictions on how you can sell items in some categories, such as art, gift cards and coupons.[27] eBay, Craigslist and Amazon publish these guidelines on their websites.
Writing an eBook and selling it on your blog can be a great money maker. Your eBook should be directly relevant to your blog’s content so you can sell your book to your existing audience. Creating a recipe eBook for a food blog or an eBook full of training plans to complement your fitness site are just a couple of examples that have the potential to sell.
The trend of healthy eating is here to say. Yet with so much contradictory advice online about what is good for us and what is not, more and more people turn to professional nutritionists for specialist tips and guidance. You can easily find free online courses to learn the fundamentals of this profession and start offering personalized nutrition plans online.
Commercial use requires 'releases' - editorial use doesn't. Stock photos can be sold for commercial (eg, marketing) or editorial (ie, journalistic) use. You'll have more opportunities to make cash if your photos are available for both, but photos containing people or property (including branding and logos) need signed releases to be sold commercially.

Getting businesses to advertise on your podcast, either at the beginning or end or both is a great way to create a revenue through podcasts. Most businesses won’t be keen to advertise on your podcast until you can prove a large number of listeners. Therefore, it is unlikely you will be able to start out from the get-go with sponsors. But once you accumulate regular listeners or a high number of downloads from iTunes, you can start to sell advertising space on your podcasts.


From an institutional perspective, it's worth noting that most universities don't break even on their tech transfer operations. Patent prosecution and skilled staff are expensive and difficult to justify solely on the basis of economic return. It can be very difficult to determine which technologies are worth pursuing at the early stage at which they are disclosed in a university environment (WAY before VCs make their decisions, with typically a 1 in 10 hit rate for big returns), but even so, many investments need to be made with low hit rates for a financially successful outcomes. Less than 1 percent of university inventions generate more than $100k in licensing revenues (per analysis done at Stanford).
Those engaging with your company online via mobile devices need to have the same positive experience as they would on desktop. This means implementing a mobile-friendly or responsive website design to make browsing user-friendly for those on mobile devices. It might also mean reducing the length of your lead generation forms to create a hassle-free experience for people downloading your content on-the-go. As for your social media images, it's important to always have a mobile user in mind when creating them as image dimensions are smaller on mobile devices, meaning text can be cut-off.
As a matter of fact, online boutique has leverage over the brick and mortar boutique. If you run an online boutique, you customer will not be restricted to people within the city where your boutique is located but to people all over the world. All you need to do maximize your online boutique is to make arrangement for cheaper and reliable shipping services. If that is in place, people from all over the world can conveniently patronize your boutique.
The German Economist Schumpeter once said that there are “no original ideas”, only new combinations of old ones. Curation of curiosity-fueling content is an intriguing and little-known business model. One of the best success stories out there is Brainpickings – a platform that describes itself as “an inventory of cross-disciplinary interestingness, spanning art, science, design, history, philosophy, and more”. The subscription-based model and successful utilization of affiliate links have turned the blog into a self-sustaining business.

If you possess a great deal of business experience and knowledge, why not create a business that helps aspiring entrepreneurs find success? You can use your skills to help new business owners get off to a good start and help experienced entrepreneurs keep up with demand. To show off your knowledge and skills and bring in clients, you can also write articles about business on platforms like LinkedIn.
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